09 September 2012

From the Evangelist Desk September 2012 edition of the Magazine

What have you got to offer? (Inspired by Purpose Driver daily devotional)

God made each and every one of us unique to benefit others.

I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my spokesman to the world. (Jeremiah 1:5 NLT)

In Jeremiah 1:5, we are taught that God created Jeremiah to share the Lords message with the nations. In the same way, God created each of us to share ourselves with those around us.
Remember we are all diminished if we hide ourselves under a bushel, keeping our skills, talents, insights, joy, and pain hidden away from others. God wants us to share ourselves. He created us with a uniqueness that enriches the world when we give ourselves to the community around us.
Maybe we’re a great singer, or a great cook, or a great mechanic, or a great teacher. Whatever gift God has given us, he gave it to us to give away in service to him.
Each of us must ask why God created us and what we’re supposed to give away. Whose life will we influence by giving of our time and talent?
So let’s spend some time today with a pen and paper, if you are like my darling wife. Or a computer, keyboard and mouse if you are like me, and make some notes about our gifts from the Lord. Remember you are not like me, and I am not like you, we are all unique and therefore have unique gifts to bring to the Lords table to offer to those around us.
A long time ago I undertook an audit for the Deanery regarding gifting and it was amazing the response that I received from all concerned. Physical items were gifted, where one parish would state that they have one of these, or are able to produce this and that if other parishes wished to use it/them, which is wonderful. But no one said I have the gift of figures, so I can be a treasurer for the church. Or I have the gift of building so I am able to help in sourcing materials, or even building for the church.
 Many of us do not see our work skills as being a gift; we feel that they are what we have been trained to do. But if the Lord had not given us the mind, aptitude and enthusiasm to learn the skills to use in our working life, where we are comfortable in our daily strife, are we saying that we are acting independent from God?  Hopefully not because I for one am always asking that the Lord lead me in all that I do, work, home and play.
So again I say let’s spend some time today with our preferred writing type and make notes of our uniqueness, our gifts that we have. Hopefully we have a list forming now.
Next let’s have a go at exploring where we think these gifts may fit with helping others and our church. If you get stuck have a chat with some friends asking their advice. We could even ask our priest.
Each and every one of us is able to offer a unique gift to the Glory of God’s Kingdom, and if we should offer that unique gift to benefit others, who may not know church, how great it would be, because seeds will be sown and questions asked as to who are those people who are being of benefit to us?
Yours in Christ
Rick Hayes